After the disclosure of the assets of the members of the French government, the philosopher François Galichet proposes in Le Monde (April 4) that the income and assets of all French citizens should be made public:
“When you buy a car,” he writes, “a house or a boat, you’re already revealing your financial means to others. What harm could it do to go from this indirect, limited exposure of wealth to a complete across-the-board display? …
“This would guarantee for each citizen that in an area where justice is essential, no one can hide anything from anyone else. Without transparency there can be no justice. To defend the privacy of income and wealth is to consider them shameful matters that one must hide. Accepting transparency, by contrast, is to treat them like realities about which we can talk openly so as to determine their limits.”
This appeal appeared in the Paris paper Libération (September 4), signed by the rapper Mokless, the journalist Mouloud Achour and the entrepreneur Félix Marquardt:
“Young people of France, this is not a call to evade taxes, but simply to leave. As we say in Northern Africa and in the poorest neighbourhoods of France, your elders treat you like asses without ears, ‘khmar bla ouinedine.’ Their pretty words increasingly conceal a far more embarrassing truth: you live in a hyper-centralist, ossified gerontocracy which crumbles a little more each day….
“Or, to put it more prosaically, get the hell out of here if you want to get more out of life. Because even if you don’t make more money right away by (re)launching your career abroad, the probability that your lifestyle will improve after a couple of years is far greater than if you remain stuck in the mud here in France….
“Young people of France, not just your homeland is yours for the taking, but the entire world. So go out and take it, even if it hurts.”